Last Sunday the pastor in a message from the book of Ruth said, “God is always working but seldom noticed.” As the story unfolds, Ruth moves from widow to wife, poverty to wealth, idol-worshipping outcast to being grafted into the family of God and through her marriage to Boaz, becoming part of the family tree leading to Jesus.
Things worked out pretty well for Ruth. But what about her mother-in-law Naomi? Her story is about being driven from her home by famine, losing her husband and two sons, having to part with a daughter-in-law, and being so devastated by her life circumstances she tells her friends, “Do not call me Naomi; call me Mara,[bitter] for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. I went away full, but the Lord has brought me back empty. (Ruth 1:20)
Rom. 8:28 says, “We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Was God working for good for Ruth and not Naomi? No, but the good that is being worked out is according to His plan for Kingdom purposes, not our preferences.
Ultimately, not filtering God’s purposes through my preferences is the way of the cross, “Not My will but Thine be done” (Mt. 26:39).